While on the topic of Udupi, I thought it will be interesting to pen down a few lines about Udupi in the next couple of blogs. I have collected these tidbits from my readings over the years. They may not be authoritative, of course. There are many versions for each of these stories. The following are from my readings and understanding.

  • Sri Madhvacharya founded the Sri Krishna temple in Udupi.
  • It is widely believed that Sri Madhva helped rescue a ship near Malpe (about 5 kms from Udupi) and in gratitude, the captain of the ship let Sri Madhva pick-up anything he wanted from the ship. Sri Madhva picked up the Krishna and Balarama idols cast in Gopi Chandana and brought them to Udupi.
  • The Krishna idol is supposed to have been sculpted by Vishwakarma, the celestial architect for Rukmini. Rukmini is supposed to have been worshipping this idol in Dwaraka.
  • It is believed that Sri Madhva composed the “Dwadasha Stotras” while walking back to Udupi with the Krishna Idol. The Dwadasha Stotras are an example of the skill of Sri Madhva in the art of poetry and music.
  • Udupi is also known as “Rajata Peeta Puram” or “Raupya Peeta Puram”. In fact, the entrance arch at Udupi welcomes visitors in Sanskrit to “Rajata Peeta Puram”.
  • Before the Sri Krishna temple was established, Udupi was known as a place of congregation for Brahmins of South Kanara. The Anantheshwara and Chandramouleshwara temples of Udupi were established long before the Sri Krishna temple. Even today, the custom is to visit the Anantheshwara and Chandramouleshwara temples before entering the Krishna temple. Of course, this custom is not practised by all. But, during the Paryaya, the incoming Swamiji follows this order.
  • Sri Madhva entrusted the responsibility of the Krishna temple to eight of his disciples or “Shishyas”. The disciples took turns of two months each in worshipping the Lord. The eight disciples led to the formation of the eight mathas.
  • Sri Vadiraja Swamiji changed the duration of worship from two months to two years. This made it easy for the Swamiji’s to travel around and spread the Dvaita and Vaishnava cultures for 14 years before heading back for the 2 year Paryaya.
  • Sri Madhva’s mother tongue was Tulu. His father’s name was Narayana Nadillaya Bhatta and his mother’s name was Vedavathi. His father’s middle name means “One from the middle house” in Tulu.
  • Sri Madhva is widely considered as the third avatar of Vayu, after Hanuman and Bhima. In fact, the strong physical features of Sri Madhva is widely recorded. He was an active wrestler and has many recorded physical feats during his lifetime. Proofs of some of these are visible to this date in Pajaka, his birthplace.

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